If you want to know when you can harvest the seeds of sunflower or the varieties of edible sunflower seeds that can be harvested, you need to know the characteristics of them. However, it may not be enough. You also need to see the pictures. But, where can we find them? We will give you the explanation below.
The Pictures of Sunflower Varieties for Harvesting Seeds
Do you plant sunflower seeds and now those grow well? But, when you want to harvest, you may not be sure when to harvest. If so, you need to know the characteristics of sunflower seeds which are ripe that we explain below. Also, you are able to find some pictures of ripe sunflower seeds.
Or, you may be at a point where you want to plant sunflower seeds, but you do not know what kind of varieties to plant. If you want to plant sunflowers which can produce edible sunflower seeds, you can read another part of this article below about the best edible sunflower seeds. There, we explain the varieties of sunflowers that you can plant for producing the best edible sunflower seeds.
However, knowing the characteristics and also the varieties of sunflower seeds for harvesting them may not be enough. You need some pictures of them. If so, you are able to find the pictures of varieties of sunflower for harvesting in some websites such as Pinterest, Google and on websites which explain about sunflower seeds. On websites which explain about sunflower seeds, how to plant them, how to harvest them, and any other topic related to sunflowers, usually you can find those kinds of pictures.
By seeing the pictures, you can have a clear portrait about the varieties of sunflower seeds for harvesting them.
The Time to Harvest Sunflower Seeds
If you want to harvest sunflower seeds, it is very easy. However, you need to know when the best time for harvesting sunflower seeds is. It is because if you pick the heads before the proper time, they may have a lot of seed which coats with little meat. If you wait too long to harvest them, the tender seeds will be too dry to roast or even the animals will begin sunflower harvesting for you. So, there will be nothing left for you.
You can harvest the seeds of sunflowers when their petals are dry and begin to fall. You will see that the green base of the head will turn yellow and at the end they will be brown. The seeds will be plump and their coats will be fully black or black and white stripes depending on the variety. If you find that animals or birds get them, you are able to use fine netting or paper bags. You are able to cover the heads with them as soon as the petals start to wilt.
How to Harvest The Seeds of Sunflowers
If you want to harvest the seeds of sunflowers, you need to know the right time so that you can get the good seeds that can be consumed. However, sometimes it is a little bit tricky to know when we can harvest the seeds of sunflowers.
When the flower opens, it will be a long time before everything has been pollinated and seeds fully develop. Usually, the seeds of sunflowers can be harvested 30 to 45 days after the flower opens. However, it is important for you to note that it depends a lot on the weather.
If you see that the flower head becomes yellow from green and the head of the seed starts to brown, it means that the seeds of sunflower are ripe. If you are not sure yet, you can test for ripeness. How to do that? You are able to gently pry out a seed or two and then you have to give them a taste. If then you are sure that they are ripe which means that they are ready to harvest, you are able to cut the stem of the flower a few inches below the head of the seed. After that, you have to dry the seeds in a place where they are protected from birds. You are able to try to wrap the entire flower in a loose layer of cheesecloth and then hang it in a sheltered area which has good airflow. Then, alternately, you are able to hang them indoors. If the heads of the seeds are dry after a few weeks, then the thing that you are able to do is to gently pry the seeds out with your fingers or a fork.
The Best Sunflower Seeds To Eat
What types of sunflowers which are best for consuming? You are able to check them in the list below.
- Mammoth Grey Stripe
It can grow about 12 feet tall. It will be able to produce seed heads up to 20 inches across. This sunflower type is the most common backyard variety.
- Mammoth Russian
It can grow up to 12 to 15 feet tall and has thin-shelled seeds.
This varieties is popular for particularly large flowers that can grow up to 2 feet across.
- Hopi Black Dye
This varieties is an old heirloom. The seeds are edible and the shells of the seeds were used as a black dye by the Hopi Indians. The center of these flowers is striking because of the very dark seeds.
- Paul Bunyan
This varieties is popular for very tall plants.
It is one of the tallest varieties and it can grow 16 feet tall. Also, it can produce seed heads up to 2 feet across.
Besides the varieties of sunflowers above, there are also short sunflowers which can produce edible seeds. You are able to plant these new short hybrids for practical backyard sunflower seed growing.
This sunflower type has 7 feet tall with impressive 8 inch flowers and high seed production.
- Super Snack
One large 10 inch flower can be produced by this variety on a 5 foot tall pant. The seeds of this sunflower are easy to crack.